I need advice

I need some advice. I am 32 years old and applying to Med Schools. I have a 3.0 from Penn State and have been working as a paramedic for 9 years. I have excellent letter writers, MDs DOs and science profs. My experience and recommendations are of no worry. What worries me is my MCAT score–23P. Would I still be competitive or should I take the MCAT again? I’m worried I wouldn’t improve. Will my experience make up for the MCAT? Any advice would be helpful.

Have you taken any coursework recently? I couldn’t tell from your post. If not, doing so might bring up your cumulative GPA and also better prepare you for the MCAT.

What do you think prevented you from doing well on the MCAT? Is it something that you believe you can address, perhaps over the next year, with significant time devoted to studying?

If you were a member of an Adcom, what would you think of your app?

And welcome to OPM Please browse around a bit - there have been many people in a similar situation, and some of their experiences may be helpful to you.

I actually finished my BS this past year, starting in 1994, leaving college in 1999 and returning just last year. I had to take OChem, Calc and Inorganic, among other classes to finish. My GPA since I left PSU-University Park is 3.85 with 40+ credits. I hope admissions sees the improvement. As far as the MCAT I work 52 hours a week and have a wife and three kids–5, 2 and 1. I don’t think I would have time to study again for the MCAT. What do you think?

I think you might need to take the MCAT again, 23 is pretty low. If I remember correctly, 25 is about the average for all people who TAKE the MCAT. The average for those who matriculate into US medical schools is closer to 30 (Someone correct me on this one if Im way off.)

If you can’t figure out a way to study for the MCAT now, adcom’s might see that as a lack of commitment. If you can’t do that now, they might ask how you will be able to deal with medical school, which take’s up a lot more time then MCAT prep.

With an improved MCAT score it sounds like you would be a competitive candidate for many schools.

Just my 2 cents


I have submitted my apps to AACOMAS and AMCAS with my 23P. I will more than likely take the MCAT again Aug 26. Will schools be able to consider both scores or will their mind be made up before my second results are sent?

They’ll be able to see that you have a pending date, and once your scores are in, they’ll be able to see both. It’s entirely possible some schools will reject you (or choose to interview you) without seeing the second result.

I have to ask - other than a motivation to do better, why are you taking it again? That is, what leads you to believe that you’ll score better this time?

I’d definitely recommend retaking the MCAT and using it as an opportunity to prove that you can excel. I would expect that the second attempt would be after some changes though - different study techniques, studying assistance, something.

You answered your own questions. I want to excel. I want Adcoms to have no doubts about considering me…as foolish as that sounds. I absolutely underestimated PS, absolutely did not give enough time to physics. I know I can improve PS score.